Waikerie’s silo art shares the wonder of majestic River Murray

South Australian artist Garry Duncan has been living off his brush since the age of 16. He has spent the past four decades using his work to draw attention around the world to water issues, in particular the Murray Darling Basin and the environment.

Garry has many clients in the corporate sector across Australia and overseas in Asia, Europe and the Americas.

“I have artwork in places as obscure as the Bacardi Rum boardroom in Puerto Rico,” he says.

Therefore, it only seems fitting, that he was one of two artists chosen by a Melbourne based street art consultant to decorate two empty silos owned by grain handling company, Viterra, at Waikerie in the Riverland.

The silo art by Garry features native river creatures such as pelicans, ducks, frogs and rain moths. Photo by Bruce Mouatt.

The SA Government funded project was selected based on community votes and $150,000 was awarded to the project after Waikerie resident and author, Liz Frankel, applied for funding in 2017.

Nature Foundation SA also sponsored the project, which was based on the theme, Healthy River, Healthy Community. The paintings on the silos can be seen from several kilometres away and complements the beauty of the majestic River Murray.

Garry has painted semi-abstract river landscapes and characterised native river creatures such as pelicans, ducks, frogs and rain moths. He used a brush and a roller and did it all freehand, without using graphs to map out his images.

The second artist, Jimmy Dvate from Melbourne, who is well known for his street art, painted a majestic regent parrot, a yabby and the endangered Murray Hardyhead fish.

The artists’ two different styles complement each other.

Melbourne street artist, Jimmy Dvate was also involved in the project and painted this eye-catching regent parrot. Photo by David Sickerdick Photography.

To paint the almost 30m tall silos over a combined period of 16 weeks, the two artists used elevated work platforms. They used nearly 500 litres of paint to complete the works of art, which cover 360 degrees of both silos.

Garry says the silos are the perfect canvas to educate the public about the need to care for the River Murray.

“The river is not a commodity, it is an entity, and that entity is water, sky, the land, the vegetation, all the birds, fish and mammals and the people as well,” he says.

Liz Frankel says the murals, which were completed in March, are already attracting more tourists to Waikerie.

“It is unique because the entire silos are painted all the way around and to my knowledge there is no other silo art project in Australia that has used two artists, it has only been individual artists,” she says.

The Waikerie Silo Art project is unique because the silos are painted all the way around and can be viewed from the land and river.

Garry now lives in the Adelaide Hills with his wife Lou, but the Riverland has been his backdrop since the 1970s. He worked as a sign writer apprentice in Ferntree Gully in Victoria after he left school, but his talent also led to him working on public art murals.

At the age of 18, he moved to Berri in the SA Riverland and set up a sign writing business. Garry also creates sculptures using materials as diverse as glass, timber, steel and stone.

In 1997, he worked with Riverland indigenous artists to complete a mural underneath the Berri Bridge.

After it was damaged by termites in 2017, he was involved in painting a new mural under the bridge and creating a new steel installation based on the Ngurunderi Dreaming Story.

Garry’s iconic art work can also be found on Goolwa’s Hindmarsh Island Bridge, the Brindabella Aerospace Centre at Canberra Airport and on Renmark’s Twenty Third Street Distillery’s Prime 5 Brandy label.

He believes he is fortunate to make a living as an artist who can inform and educate.

Garry Duncan’s Karoonda Shuffle sculptures portray the rhythm of the grain crops grown in the Murray Mallee. Photo by Dave Hartley.

Interested in other silo murals across regional SA? Check out our story on Tumby Bay here!

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From slab of stone to work of art – Maccy sculptures take shape

Talented artists are cutting, splitting, drilling and polishing tonnes of stone for the third instalment of Sculptors @ Crystal Lake in the Adelaide Hills.

The popular festival at Macclesfield’s Crystal Lake has seen nine sculptors start to transform massive slabs of SA granite and marble into sculptural works of art across nine days.

The large stone slabs were craned into position ready for the strenuous creative process, beginning last weekend and continuing until April 14.

Thousands of people will make their way to Crystal Lake Park to witness the action, as sculptors use hammers, picks, angle grinders and other tools to craft the slabs into stunning pieces, some of which will be placed in public locations across the region.

Sculptors hard at work during the early stages of a past Sculptors @ Crystal Lake.

Sculptors @ Crystal Lake is a biennial event which began in 2015 and has since become Macclesfield’s largest event, attracting a significant amount of visitors throughout the town. The main street is about one minute’s drive from Crystal Lake and also swells with visitors throughout the duration of the festival, particularly on the dedicated family day. The final stretch of the festival is spent with sculptors polishing and refining their designs.

Over the years, many of the sculptures have been installed at various public places throughout the Hills region, including at nearby Longview Vineyard, the Stirling Organic Market and Café, at Prospect Hill and in the nearby regional centre of Mt Barker.

The festival, run by the Macclesfield Community Association in conjunction with the Sculptors @ Crystal Lake committee, is fuelled mostly by volunteer effort and the passion of those in the local arts and sculpture scene.

Event co-ordinator Keryn Korr says the event has grown since its first instalment four years ago and that the 2019 festival will include some new additions.

These include sculpture workshops for school groups and the general public with skilled sculptor Evan Maker who will guide participants (aged 12 and over) through a four-hour session. A geological exhibit will showcase stone used to make the sculptures, including signature rare pink Paris Creek/Macclessfield marble, Sellicks Hill marble, Wudinna granite, Padthaway green, and Harlequin granitic gneiss.

Many of the sculptures involve intricate designs and details, creating unique pieces, some of which are to be admired in public settings.

“Geology plays an important role in providing the dimensional stone required to create the sculptures, combined with skilled sculptors who expose the stone’s hidden beauty,” says geological consultant Peter Hough, who prepared the exhibit with support from the Department for Energy and Mining.

“We want people to come to this sculpture fest and go away with a real understanding about the whole process of stone sculpting including the opportunity to attend a workshop and carve their own piece to take home”.

Keryn says Sculptors @ Crystal Lake has a positive impact on local businesses across the nine days.

“This is our third Sculptors @ Crystal Lake and it has a huge following. Macclesfield businesses get really excited and put special (discount) offers into our visitor guide,” she says. “Thousands of people attend, it’s the biggest thing for businesses and it really rocks the village of Maccy.”

The 2.7m black granite ‘Soaring Prospect’ by Ben Tolhurst from the 2017 event can be spotted at the entrance to the historic township of Prospect Hill.

Highly acclaimed sculptor and artistic director Silvio Apponyi is one of the nine sculptors taking on the huge slabs of stone alongside Barry Lincoln, Peter Syndicas, John Nelson, Timothy Spooner, Jina Lee, Quentin Gore, Robert Wuldi and Sally Wickes.

“People who come and visit the park  can watch the transition from rough stone block through to finished work,” he says. “We (sculptors) all stay down here together so we are working together, looking at what each other are making. Most of us would work in our studios, so to get together and work as friends is a really lovely experience.”

Attending symposiums around the world, Silvio has also directed the Adelaide Hills International Sculpture Symposium, while his recent stone creation of former Australian cricket captain Clem Hill stands at the entrance to Adelaide Oval.

His Spriggina floundersi from the 2017 Sculptors @ Crystal Lake is expected to be installed at the University of Adelaide in the near future.

A much-anticipated event at the 2019 Sculptors @ Crystal Lake is the carving of a giant slab of Melba’s chocolate on April 13. At the 2017 event, Silvio carved a giant chocolate bilby from a 120kg chocolate block, using a chainsaw and axe to carve the shapes, sending chocolate shards flying into the air – much to the delight of children. The chocolate carving will unfold again on the Family Day, Saturday April 13, from 3pm.

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Outback wool stories to be spun through AWN design comp

The provenance of South Australian wool will be celebrated through a public design competition launched by the Australian Wool Network (AWN).

AWN is encouraging South Australians with a strong connection to wool growing in the Flinders Ranges and Outback to help shine a spotlight on the industry, its farmers and the quality of locally grown merino wool through the DNA Design Series competition.

People with a strong connection to woolgrowing in the Flinders Ranges and Outback can submit their design idea in hope of it featuring in a high quality Australian merino wool homewares item, such as a blanket. The Limestone Coast and Eyre Peninsula will be included in the DNA Design Series in coming weeks.

Last year, Barossa abstract artist Marnie Gilder teamed up with the AWN to launch a pair of fine merino wool blankets showcasing the Barossa Valley’s wool producers. Following the success of this project, the new national DNA Design Series competition was developed in aim of further showcasing wool growing regions.

A merino wool blanket from Marine Gilder’s ‘Only Merino Barossa’ collection launched in 2018.

AWN DNA program manager Cynthia Jarratt says the competition is part of the organisation’s Direct Network Advantage (DNA) provenance campaign, which enables consumers to understand where wool products come from.

“Our DNA program benefits consumers, who more and more want to know where the fibres they wear and use come from and our wool growers who are just as keen to understand what becomes of the wool they grow,” she says.

“Just like the paddock to plate concept in the hospitality industry, our DNA campaign tracks the wool to its source here in SA in an exciting and innovative way.”

Owners of the DNA fabrics can use their mobile phone to scan a QR swing tag on the woollen product to view information, stories and videos that showcase the region and its wool growers.

Sheep yards from above at Mt Eba Station in outback SA. Photo by Margie Whittlesea.

“We have some of the world’s most desirable merino wool being grown here in SA in some of Australia’s most beautiful country and our DNA program provides a great opportunity to showcase this to not only our Australian customers, but to the many international tourists who purchase our wool products,” Cynthia says.

The chosen wool designs will be sold at selected retail outlets and at Merino and Co – an Australian merino wool clothing store.

Winners will receive $1000 and $500 worth of the final product featuring their design. The Flinders/Outback winner will also receive $1000 donated by SA woolgrowers Tony and Julie Smith of Rawnsley Park Station and MF Jebsen Australia of Martins Well Rangeland Reserve, both of the Flinders Ranges.

Click here for more information and to enter.

Feature image is Andrew Smart of Wilkatana Station at Port Augusta with lamb diva, Ellie May.

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Mundulla sculptures on show

When the Mundulla Show committee introduced an acquisitive sculpture prize as part of its competition line-up, long-time show supporter and Tatiara District councillor, Liz Goossens, became concerned that it wouldn’t catch on.

“We sent out letters to lots of well-known sculptors, but got a bit worried that no one was going to enter,” she says.

Liz raided a friend’s shed and collected a ute-load of steel before setting to work on some creations of her own.

“We’ve been brought up exhibiting all our lives; mum and dad taught us that if you don’t have people entering and getting involved, then you don’t have an event, so it’s definitely in my blood,” she says.

“I didn’t know how to weld, but you could enter anonymously, so I figured no-one would know it was me if they weren’t really up to scratch.”

Sculpturist and Tatiara District councillor Liz Goodens.

Liz’s secret didn’t last long when she was awarded first, second and third place. She used her prize money to buy a new welder, and has been sculpting ever since.

As part of the competition rules, the winning sculptures remain in Mundulla as public artworks, and many now feature along the walking trail on the common land surrounding the picturesque Limestone Coast town.

Originally intended for grazing, the area spanning 110ha is now a popular recreational space widely used by residents and visitors, and sculptures of birds, butterflies, snails, kangaroos, emus, frogs and flying ducks are a big drawcard.

“There’s even fairies and lots of other small things that kids love; you might come across a bird up a tree – it isn’t always obvious, as a lot of them blend in with their surroundings,” Liz says.

With her own backyard overlooking the trail, Liz frequently adds to the collection, often collaborating with long-time Country Fire Service volunteer Brian Wiese.

One of the creations along the walking trail.

“Although I know what I’m trying to create, I often don’t know the engineering side of it but Brian’s really practical, and I love his ‘we’ll be right’ attitude,” Liz says.

This year’s theme for the show sculpture prize is ‘The Wheels of Time’ and Liz’s creation is still evolving. She’s also trying out black forest cake recipes after the council CEO challenged the elected female members to a show bake-off. Meanwhile, Mayor Graham Excell and the male councillors are vying for the best West End beer cake.

“It’s all a lot of fun,” Liz says. “While other country shows are struggling, we’ve always had a really strong indoor section, and I think it’s because Mundulla has been innovative and moved with the times.”

The Mundulla Show is held every year on the first Saturday of March in conjunction with the Moot Yang Gunya Festival. For more information, visit mundullashow.org.au

The walking trail features sculptures of wildlife and other abstract creations.

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International mural artists set to bring Port Adelaide streets alive

International artists will descend upon Port Adelaide late next month to transform more of the Port’s blank walls into vibrant works of art.

Three-day festival Wonderwalls Port Adelaide, in conjunction with The Big Picture Fest, will attract world class street artists to transform bland walls throughout the town centre into striking art installations, to be celebrated publicly from March 29–31.

Wonderwalls Port Adelaide, which has been held biennially since 2015, transforming key sites such as the Marine and Harbors building on St Vincent Street, and Harts Mill into colourful attractions. More than 70 artists have taken part in past festivals.

Four visiting international artists Sat One (Rafael Gerlach) of Germany, Peeta (Manuel Di Rita) of Italy, Akue 1 of Russia and husband and wife duo Diva and Phat 1 (Charles and Janine Williams) of New Zealand, will begin painting their creations a few days before the festival on March 25 before finishing a week later on March 31.

If this mural by New Zealand artists Diva and Phat 1 is anything to go by, the 2019 Port Adelaide creation is set to be stunning.

South Australia’s finest street and mural artists Sarah Boese, 10TKL and Dave Court will represent the local creative space.

Organisers say the 2017 event drew more than 20,000 visitors across one weekend.

Fellow SA mural artist Joel Van Moore, better known as Vans the Omega, is Wonderwalls’ creative director and says the festival grows from strength to strength each year, with 2019 shaping up to be more impressive than ever.

“Wonderwalls brings together some of the world’s most highly acclaimed street artists to work alongside Adelaide’s finest and encourages local creatives to exceed in their endeavours,” he says.

A number of events will unfold throughout the festival, including welcome parties, art walks, and photographic tours and workshops. Pirate Life Brewery will also celebrate with music festival, A Day on the Cans, on Saturday March 30.

Onlookers watch artist Smug complete his wall during the 2015 Wonderwalls Festival.

Former Art Gallery of SA director Nick Mitzevich, who now heads up the National Gallery of Australia in Canberra, is fond of Wonderwalls and says it has transformed Port Adelaide into a museum without walls.

“Bringing mural artists from around the world to the Port demonstrates that art is no longer about the edifice,” he says.

“Art can be everywhere. This is not a new point to make, in fact, in many ways it’s a reminder of the essential role that art has played for most of history.”

Wonderwalls is run in conjunction with The Big Picture Fest, an independent mural festival run by Joel Van Moore and mainly focused on small-scale festivals and the growing hunger for mural work in regional towns and cities.

The four international artists painting at Wonderwalls will also tour The Big Picture Fest in Franklin, Victoria, from March 22–24. The Big Picture Fest came to Adelaide during the SA Living Artists (SALA) festival last year, as well as Port Pirie on SA’s Yorke Peninsula.

Regional exhibition tells a story that must be told

For many years Aboriginal woman Kunyi June Anne McInerney has picked up a paint brush as a way to reflect on her past and share her life experiences of being a member of the Stolen Generations.

Moments of separation, struggles but also joy are reflected in her most recent collection of artwork that has set off on a two-year touring exhibition across regional South Australia.

Launched at the Port Pirie Regional Art Gallery last week and presented by Country Arts SA, the exhibition My Paintings Speak For Me will be shared in galleries across the state, from as far west as Port Lincoln to as far east as Bordertown.

“These are my stories from a dry, remote place where my experiences were so different from what Australian children know today. These are not fairy tales, they are true,” Kunyi says.

“I want people to understand what happened. Painting is the best way for me to tell my stories.”

Curator Maggie Fletcher, left, with artist Kunyi June Anne McInerney at the exhibition opening in Port Pirie.

In 1955 at the age of four, Kunyi was taken from her mother Daisy, a Yankunytjatjara woman, and placed in the Oondnadatta Children’s Home.

She was one of many Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children torn from their families and raised in institutions or adopted into foster families between the 1900s and 1960s.

But from the struggles, Kunyi has created beauty in the form of art; vibrant colours used to depict the rich, burnt orange earth of the outback, reflecting on memories of both sorrow and joy. She says she found comfort in painting and drawing as a child.

“Every Sunday in the missionary we did artwork and learnt something different, and I just went to another planet,” Kunyi says.

“We were always in a good mood then, we were always helping each other out and it was really exciting to see what the others would come up with. In primary school the teachers said I was the best in the class.”

Kunyi now lives at Henley Beach and has three adult children. Aside from being a much-exhibited artist whose works are appreciated not only in Australia but also overseas, she is also a published book illustrator.

The paintings and stories for My Paintings Speak For Me have been collated by curator Maggie Fletcher, with Country Arts SA also commissioning an artist video to run alongside the exhibition.

Kunyi June Anne McInerney, Sunday Service, 2016, acrylic on canvas, 61×91 cm. Image courtesy of the artist.

“We are delighted to present this brand new exhibition that provides insight into a dark and often forgotten time in Australian history that has an ongoing impact today,” says Country Arts SA CEO Steve Saffell.

“There’s a lot of sadness but also joy in Kunyi’s exquisite representation of her childhood memories in the mission home. Parts of her story will literally come to life before your eyes in an animated video we have commissioned to complement her work.”

The collection of Kunyi’s work was first exhibited at the Migration Museum in Adelaide earlier this year. It will be shown in Port Pirie until January 13, 2019, before heading to Murray Bridge, Goolwa, Hahndorf, Roxby Downs, Port Lincoln, Port Augusta, Millicent, Tailem Bend, Balaklava, Moonta, the Barossa Valley, Kapunda, Burra and Bordertown.

For more information on dates and locations visit the Country Arts SA website.

Header image: Kunyi June Anne McInerney, Mission Buildings with Dining Area, 2017, acrylic on canvas, 61×91 cm. On loan from the Migration Museum, a division of the History Trust of South Australia, image courtesy of the artist.

Ben Quilty’s first survey exhibition in a decade heads to Adelaide

The Art Gallery of South Australia will be the first to host a major exhibition by one of Australia’s most acclaimed contemporary artists.

Archibald Prize 2011 winner Ben Quilty will present his first major survey exhibition in a decade in Adelaide in 2019 before the collection tours to Queensland and New South Wales.

Titled Quilty, the exhibition will feature a career’s worth of works including Ben’s early reflection on the initiation rituals performed by young Australian men, his experience as an official war artist in Afghanistan and his campaign to save the lives of Bali nine pair Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran, who were executed by firing squad in 2015.

Ben mentored and became a friend to Sukumaran during his years on death row, inspiring the prisoner’s love for art and encouraging creativity behind bars.

Also included in the survey exhibition will be works inspired by Ben’s visits with Australian author Richard Flanagan to Lebanon, Lesbos and Serbia, his revisions of the Australian landscape, and portraits of himself, his family and friends.

Ben Quilty, Australia, born 1973, ‘Self-portrait after Afghanistan’, 2012, Southern Highlands, New South Wales, oil on canvas, 130.0 x 120.0 cm, private collection, Sydney, courtesy the artist.

“My work is about working out how to live in this world, it’s about compassion and empathy but also anger and resistance,” Ben says.

“Through it I hope to push compassion to the front of national debate.”

Quilty will be presented as part of the 2019 Adelaide Festival and curated by Art Galley of SA co-acting director Lisa Slade.

“The exhibition presents a portrait of a socially engaged contemporary artist who is committed to art’s capacity to instigate change,” Lisa says.

“Quilty’s subjects are never objectified, but always rendered through the lens of personal experience.

“For most of this century Quilty has been delivering urgent visions of our time in history.

“An unlikely activist, he wields paint to draw our attention to our responsibility as critical citizens in an increasingly fraught world.”

Ben Quilty, Australia, born 1973, ‘The Last Supper no.9’, 2017, Southern Highlands, New South Wales, oil on linen, 265.0 x 202.0 cm; courtesy the artist and Tolarno Galleries.

In 2011, Ben’s portrait of legendary Australian artist Margaret Olley was awarded one of the country’s most prestigious accolades, the Archibald Prize.

He then travelled to Afghanistan as Australia’s official war artist and in 2013 presented the Australian War Memorial’s major touring exhibition, After Afghanistan.

Art critic John McDonald says Ben is willing to go where many people wouldn’t otherwise step foot.

“Quilty’s radical humanism has lured him outside the sedate spaces of the art gallery into war zones, refugee camps, and the Bali prison where Myuran Sukumaran and Andrew Chan were executed,” he says.

“Not many of us would willingly undertake such journeys, which reveal Quilty’s compassion for the victim, his determination to use his skills (and increasingly high profile) to make a difference.”

Quilty will be unveiled at the Art Gallery of SA on March 2, 2019, running until June 2.

The art of life on the land

Alysha Sparks stands bare foot in her studio applying liberal layers of acrylics, Posca markers and spray paints to a canvas.

With son Bodhi on her hip or playing at her feet underneath a growing baby belly, colour by colour, layer by layer, the talented self-taught artist brings South Australia’s landscapes to life with a modern twist.

For the girl brought up in the bush with a keen eye for colour, her passions come to life on canvas and be it human, bovine, botanical or landscape, Alysha has a talent for capturing something special.

Also a gifted photographer, she has a knack for encapsulating the personalities of the families she frames, and the raw character of the farm animals in front of her lens.

Right at home in the paddock are some of Alysha Sparks’s art works flanked by a few of her subject matters.

“My work is fairly eclectic I guess,” Alysha says.

“I paint cattle and birds but then do abstract florals and landscapes as well, I guess my style is a modern take on traditional.

“The florals give me the freedom to use any colours I want and everyone loves flowers, they make you feel happy and last a lot longer than the real thing.

“As for the cattle, they have so much personality, each one is individual and I love seeing them evolve on the canvas.”

Much of Alysha’s inspiration is sourced from the natural colour of the landscape, and now with a drone camera as well, she is given a different perspective from the sky to translate onto canvas in her studio at Jamestown in SA’s Mid North, about 2.5 hours from Adelaide.

Alysha’s works will feature in an exhibition in Adelaide’s Hyde Park as part of the 2018 SALA Festival.

“The colours and textures take on a new perspective from the sky and out in the country there’s such pretty light, you get those beautiful colours coming through,” she says.

“I see a colour combination I like and snap away on the camera, take it back to the studio and start creating inspired by it, and apply it to my landscapes.”

It was her mother who first bought a 13-year-old Alysha a blank canvas and paints, giving her the freedom to experiment with colours and styles and eventually develop her own niche.

The daughter of sheep, cropping and export hay farmers, Alysha has the country in her blood.

Like so many others before her, Alysha was keen to spread her wings, moving to the city and then travelling the world, but love eventually brought her ‘home’ to Jamestown and ultimately back to her roots.

With partner Tom – a local stock agent – Alysha has embraced country life again and it is not uncommon to see her out, boots on, son Bodhi in tow, helping Tom at the sheep yards or travelling across country with him.

It is all part of her inspiration, and as much as she has wholeheartedly returned to her roots, she is grateful for the community’s welcome back into its fold.

Alysha’s modern take on traditional landscapes looking right at home.

“We came back to Jamestown five years ago, the community has really embraced my art work and photography and they’ll come to me to buy my art or have their family photos, both because they like my work and because they want to support local,” Alysha says.

“The people have been so embracing and lovely, and that’s part of why my business is going so well.”

The shop local ethos is not lost on Alysha who works alongside local framer Clive Palmer in Jamestown to finish her works, and Daniel Blackman at Blackman Gallery in Clare who she entrusts to create “world class reproduction prints”.

“Local is best, if they support me, I support them,” Alysha says.

“It’s really just about everyone supporting each other.”

While she relishes her country life, the road to Adelaide is also a well-worn path for Alysha who regularly makes the trip to deliver her art to clients as well as restocking her ongoing exhibits at The Gallery on Waymouth Street in the city.

Locally her works are on show at café Bindlestick in Jamestown, and at Atore gift shop in Melrose, as well as through her website, alyshasparks.com

Alysha has an exhibition, Native, on show at Toop and Toop at King William Road, Hyde Park in Adelaide, as part of the SALA festival until the end of August.

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Best places to find SALA art where you’ll least expect it

Cemeteries, airports and distilleries aren’t places usually brimming with art, but works forming this year’s 2018 South Australia Living Artists (SALA) Festival will be hard to miss.

The annual festival kicks off on August 1 and runs until August 31, with a ground-breaking 9000 artists taking part in more than 700 exhibitions and events across metropolitan Adelaide and regional South Australia.

Aside from the usual galleries, museums, libraries and cafés, some unsuspecting locations will also show paintings, sculptures and creations.

“Art doesn’t have to hang on gallery walls or be hard to access,” says SALA festival director Penny Griggs.

“This year’s program reflects the diversity and inclusivity of the SALA Festival.

“We are thrilled that 9000 people will showcase their unique concept of living art to the people of SA.”

Here’s five places to find SALA art where you’ll least expect it!


1. Distilleries

Sip a G&T and enjoy contemporary abstract works exploring “the passionate collision of emotions and colour” at Prohibition Liquor Co in the Adelaide’s CBD.

Artist Katie Spry’s works will be on show at this Gilbert Street craft spirits producer, which recently took a sweep of awards both here and overseas. 

Catch Katie’s exhibition Colour Ascension from August 2-30.

Regional SA isn’t immune to SALA festivities, nor has escaped spirit fever.

Most of the state’s best spirit producers are based in regional areas, including in Renmark, where Twenty Third Street Distillery can be found.

The Riverland distillery will host There is no place like home featuring works by five artists exploring what home means no matter how little or much you have.

For those wandering through the Barossa, the Barossa Distilling Company in Nuriootpa is showing Botanical by Lottie Rosenzweig.

Spot her quirky embroidered Italian line wall hangings and illustrations.

Drove to the airport to get my art on 🖼 #salacitizen #universalcitizen #sala

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2. Adelaide Airport

Photos, paintings and computer generated imagery will take over the Adelaide Airport this SALA Festival for Universal Citizen. 

The installations created by eight talented SA artists will be on display until September 23.

SA institutions the SAHMRI building and the Adelaide Central Market will also make an appearance.

Artists include Aida Azin, Liam Bosecke, Tracy Lymn, Kaspar Schmidt Mumm, Brianna Speight, Harry Thing, Dan Withey, and Emmaline Zanelli.

Adelaide Airport processes more than eight million passengers a year, so it’s fair to say that thousands of people will view these works!


3. Cemeteries

There’s probably no better place to contemplate life and art than in a cemetery.

Adelaide’s largest cemetery, Centennial Park, has a sculptural SALA walk featuring works by 13 artists.

The pieces are scattered throughout the park and tranquil gardens, and visitors can also explore the cemetery’s permanent art installations.

In another SALA event, community artist Koruna Schmidt Mumm has been working with the Friends of Walkerville Wesleyan Cemetery and St Andrew’s Primary School on activating the historic Wesleyan Cemetery.

From August 9–17, visitors can explore the ideas of what lies below, who the buried citizens are, and how cemeteries are viewed by modern society.


4. Tattoo parlour

Black Diamond Tattoo studio in Port Adelaide isn’t just about inking up – it’ll also host a series of Aboriginal artworks by Anangu woman Elizabeth Close for SALA 2018.

Using a fusion of contemporary and traditional Aboriginal art styles, Elizabeth has collated new works and old favourites for her solo exhibition Red Dust Rough Diamond.

Prints will be for sale at the launch on August 10, with mulled wine and cider on offer.

A live smoking ceremony will unfold, as will live tattooing featuring designs by Elizabeth.

You can also spot Elizabeth’s street art on Adelaide’s inner city walls.

Come escape this dreary weather with Mt Compass G3 Botanical Gin. Normally we serve this Gin with Passionfruit & Basil but since it’s our Gin of the Week, we’re mixing it up with some lively Pineapple & Mint.🍍🌿 Mt Compass have created this Navy Strength Gin by increasing the alcohol & tripling the botanicals of its base Gin. This consists of earthly notes of Angelica, Coriander & light Citrus flavours with indigenous Lemon Myrtle to deliver a Gin with plenty of strength, character and flavour. From 7-8pm we’ll also be serving $5 Pikes Pilsner or Lager or 2 for $20 Flower Bomb, Blackberry & Basil Bramble or Espresso Martini Cocktails. #thehowlingowlcafe #mcspirits #navystrength #ginisourthing #ginstagram #gin #ginlovers #ginoftheweek #happyhour #cocktails

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5. The pub

Adelaide-based artist Luke Thurgate will lead participants on an art pub crawl where participants can “draw under the influence”.

The 18+ Sketchy Art Tour is an interactive art event that will explore drawing in a number of bars and watering holes across Adelaide’s CBD.

The crew will depart the Grace Emily Hotel on Friday, August 24, at 7pm. It’s free!

Luke is also hosting a separate SALA event, Date Night Tour, departing the Howling Owl bar on August 17, at 7pm.

Get new sparks flying or rekindle the flame as you bar hop across the city while drawing and enjoying a tipple or two. Also free!

For those wanting a traditional art fix:

  • Head to the Lenzerheide Restaurant in Adelaide’s southern suburbs to spot painting and photography exhibition, Apokalypsis. Featuring works by Corey Gray and Peter Hall, the exhibition aims to reveal the “public, private and secret immersions of our everyday lives”. Corey will also unveil his commissioned work of Australian comedy legend, Dave Flanagan. The launch is on August 3, but the exhibition continues until the end of the month.
  • The West Gallery Thebarton gathered 13 of the state’s most innovative contemporary artists and asked them what drives them to paint. The result is APPROACHES |13 SA Contemporary Painters on display at the gallery until September 2. There will be an artist talk on Saturday, August 18, 2pm.

For the full SALA program and further details head here.

Header image: SALA Still Life Tour Clare Valley, 2017, photo by Sam Roberts.

First female director appointed to Art Gallery of SA

The Art Gallery of South Australia has appointed its first female director in its 137-year history.

Brisbane-born Rhana Devenport will step into the role in October, after moving on from her place as director of the Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki in New Zealand.

She is replacing Nick Mitzevich who is now leading the National Gallery of Australia in Canberra.

Rhana, who was this year appointed an officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit for her services to the arts, is the first woman to take on the director’s role in the art gallery’s history.

The announcement comes just days before the Art Gallery of SA’s exclusive exhibition Colours of Impressionism: Masterpieces from the Musée d’Orsay wraps up on Sunday, July 29.

The paintings are from the renowned collection of the Musée d’Orsay in Paris and chart the revolution of Impressionism, a 19th Century art movement known for its vibrant techniques and colour.

Claude Monet, Water lily pond, pink harmony, 1900, oil on canvas, 90 x 100 cm; Musée d’Orsay, Paris, France. © Musée d’Orsay, dist. RMN-Grand Palais / Patrice Schmidt.

The Art Gallery of SA says the impressionist exhibition, featuring masterpieces by famous artists Monet, Cézanne, Renoir and Pissarro, among others, is on track to break the gallery’s record for ticketed attendances.

The previous record is 124,000 attendances, set by The Chinese Exhibition in 1977.

The Art Gallery of SA attracts more than 800,000 people per year.

Rhana brings with her 25 years’ experience in collection development and exhibition presentation across a number of national and international platforms, with her career allowing her to forge significant connections with artists, donors, benefactors and sponsors.

“I am deeply honored by this appointment, the Art Gallery of SA has forged an excellent reputation for its ambition, its outstanding collection, and a dynamic exhibitions program,” she says.

“I am thrilled to be leading this strong and innovative cultural organisation into the future.

“Great art museums are the heart of great cities and reflect how a city considers itself in the world and how it contributes to self-discovery, empathy and shared knowledge.”

The Art Gallery of South Australia’s new director Rhana Devenport.

Art Gallery of SA chair Tracey Whiting describes Rhana as an international arts leader.

Rhana’s arts history includes being the director of the Govett-Brewster Art Gallery in New Zealand and leading the development of the Len Lye Centre.

SA Premier Steven Marshall says Rhana brings a wealth of experience, leadership acumen and a genuine commitment and understanding of the role art plays in people’s lives.

“SA has a proud history of championing the role and contribution of women across all sectors of our community – from politics and Indigenous affairs, to science and the arts – and this appointment continues that legacy,” he says.

Rhana will relocate to Adelaide with her husband, multimedia artist Tim Gruchy.

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